Lasith Malinga rejoins Mumbai Indians for IPL 2024 as fast-bowling coach, replacing Shane Bond. His legendary career and five titles with the team make him a valuable addition to the coaching staff.
In a surprising twist ahead of the IPL 2024 season, the Mumbai Indians franchise has announced that former Sri Lankan pace sensation, Lasith Malinga, will be making a grand return to the team, this time in a coaching capacity. The legendary fast bowler will be taking over as the fast-bowling coach for Mumbai Indians, replacing Shane Bond, who had held the position for the past nine seasons.
Malinga’s journey with Mumbai Indians has been nothing short of remarkable. After bidding farewell to his illustrious playing career in 2021, Malinga had initially joined the Rajasthan Royals as their fast-bowling coach in 2022. However, the cricketing world was taken by surprise as news broke of his second homecoming to Mumbai Indians. This move will mark Malinga’s second stint in the team’s support staff, having previously served as their mentor back in 2018.
The Sri Lankan maestro’s association with the Mumbai franchise dates back to his playing days when he played a pivotal role in Mumbai Indians’ triumphs. Malinga had returned to the field in 2019 to share the bowling responsibilities with Indian speedster Jasprit Bumrah, forging a formidable bowling duo that played a crucial part in securing the franchise’s fourth IPL title.
Malinga’s contribution to Mumbai Indians’ success has been nothing short of extraordinary. Over the years, he helped the team clinch five prestigious titles, including four IPL championships (in 2013, 2015, 2017, and 2019) and the Champions League T20 title in 2011. In his illustrious IPL career, Malinga showcased his mastery by scalping 170 wickets in 139 matches for Mumbai, at an economy rate of 7.12 runs per over. His remarkable record places him at joint-sixth on the list of all-time highest wicket-takers in the IPL.
Shane Bond, the outgoing fast-bowling coach, had been an integral part of Mumbai Indians’ coaching setup since 2015. His collaboration with cricketing minds like Rohit Sharma and Mahela Jayawardene, who served as the head coach from 2017 to 2022, played a pivotal role in the franchise’s consistent performance over the years. While Malinga’s return has been confirmed, it remains uncertain whether Bond will continue as the head coach of MI Emirates in the ILT20, a franchise cricket tournament that commenced earlier this year.
MI Emirates, a team affiliated with Mumbai Indians, participated in the ILT20 and managed to secure the third position on the points table in the six-team tournament. Unfortunately, they lost the second Qualifier match to the eventual champions, Gujarat Giants.
As IPL 2024 approaches, cricket enthusiasts worldwide are eagerly anticipating the return of Lasith Malinga to the Mumbai Indians camp. His wealth of experience, unparalleled skillset, and deep-rooted connection with the franchise are expected to breathe new life into the team’s fast-bowling department. Malinga’s journey from a fearsome bowler who terrorized batsmen to a mentor who will now nurture and guide the next generation of fast bowlers is a testament to his enduring impact on the game of cricket.